Week 16: Redskins at Eagles

December 23, 2012

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Week 16: Redskins’ win sets up a huge game against the Cowboys

Well, well, well.

At 3-6, who had Week 17 being an extremely meaningful game for the Washington Redskins on top of Dallas Week, to boot?

Of course, you did.

There’s no word yet on whether the game will be flexed into prime time. Nor is there any word on DeJon Gomes’s medial collateral ligament injury. Coach Mike Shanahan said Gomes would have an MRI and be assessed tomorrow.

Robert Griffin III said his knee “felt good during the game and feels good now” so that would appear to be no source of worry.

The Redskins will have a typical workweek, with the holiday falling on Tuesday. They’ll return to practice Wednesday, following their routine, to plan for Sunday.

We hope you have a great holiday. We’ll be keeping you updated on all the latest news and, of course, we’ll be here live-blogging next week.

RGIII: Knee “felt good … and feels good now”

Robert Griffin III, he of the lateral-collateral-ligament injury, said his knee “felt good” in his first action since sitting out last week’s game in Cleveland.

“Winning always cures all ills, so it felt good during the game and feels good now. It was just good to be back out there with the guys. … We won the game. I was playing quarterback for the Washington Redskins, so I felt like myself out there.”

Wearing a brace, though, was limiting.

“Any time you wear a brace, I don’t know if any of you guys have worn a brace before, but it’s going to restrict your motion. So from that, my mobility was down a little bit just because of the brace. At the same time, I was still able to do everything a quarterback is supposed to do. It didn’t necessarily slow me down by any means and I was able to protect myself out there.”

Coach Mike Shanahan indicated that the Redskins didn’t want RGIII testing his knee and doing his customarily dazzling keepers. RGIII was asked whether he was tempted to push it on the field and neatly sidestepped the topic.

“It’s whatever I felt like during the game. It’s why they call me quarterback. It’s not abbreviated with running quarterback before that or whatever else anyone wants to say. They call me quarterback because I lead the team. I’m supposed to go out there and throw the ball, assist guys and hand the ball off to Alfred [Morris] and that’s what I was able to do.”

RGIII was able to find his comfort zone, finally, in the 27-20 victory.

“Everybody stepped up big. I was able to go out there and hit guys that were wide open because they ran routes the right way, the offensive line gave me time to block and I forgot all those tough yards running the ball. It all accumulates and and eventually you’re going to break through and we did there in the third [quarter].”

The win puts the Redskins in a heady spot: playing for the division title next Sunday.

“We’re playing the best ball that we have all year at the right time. We’re rolling and we all know that. It’s been a change in our mindset since after the bye week and I think everybody’s just dialed in now. We know what we can win any kind of game we have to, whether it’s a high-scoring game or a low-scoring game or a gut-wrencher at the end. It just feels good to be in this position. We’ve controlled our own destiny since we were 3-6 and we continue to control our destiny until next week.”

Next Sunday’s game is huge, but RGIII said he wasn’t game-planning yet.

“I’m kinda hungry, so I’m going to think about that for a second and then move forward. Once we land back in Virginia — What? I am! I’m hungry! I just played a game [laughing at reporters’ questioning his hunger pangs]. I’ll probably think about the Cowboys after we land. 

“That’s everybody’s mindset. We’re already on to the next one. You don’t have to celebrate wins at this point of the season. You just know what’s ahead of you. All that is for us right now is the Cowboys.”

DeJon Gomes to have MRI

Coach Mike Shanahan said that DeJon Gomes hurt his medial collateral ligament, the degree of the injury is unknown. He’ll have an MRI and Shanahan said he’d know more Monday.

Shanahan: “Haven’t accomplished anything yet”

Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan, at the podium after the team’s 27-20 victory in Philadelphia:

“We’ve been working for this opportunity to win the division. Any time you win the division, everybody knows you have a home-field game in the playoffs and we talked about that from Day 1. They knew what we had to do to get there. I told them we haven’t accomplished anything yet. We’ve got to win the division and, obviously, get it done next week.”

The Redskins have had to fight all season, whether it was from a 3-6 start or for a victory over the Eagles to set up Sunday’s big game against the Cowboys.

“It takes a lot of character from your football team to fight through what we’ve done. We did some good things in the first half of the season, but we couldn’t put teams away. I thought from an offensive perspective, we had our running game going, but we didn’t take it to the next level with our receivers. I thought that’s probably been the biggest difference in our offense, how our receivers have performed over the last six games. As we’ve talked about, you’ve got to get sacks and you’ve got to get turnovers and we’ve been able to do that on defense. Guys [have been] fighting for a full 60 minutes and finding a way to get it done. That’s what I told them today. I’m really proud the way they finish. You’ve got to find a way to win those tight games and it’s not easy unless everybody is on the same page.”

Quarterback Robert Griffin III was making his first start since hurting his lateral collateral ligament two weeks ago and Shanahan said he was “impressed” with his performance. He admitted that the game plan didn’t call for RGIII, who was wearing a knee brace, to do everything he can do.

“I thought he did an excellent job coming back and not having the reps last week and being able to do what he did today. … We didn’t do everything that we would normally do. Didn’t want to put that pressure on that LCL.”

So now the Redskins are 9-6 and found a way to win their sixth in a row. 

“As we’ve talked about in the past, winning those tight games is hard. You’ve got to get used to winning those tight games and you expect to win. I think that’s where our football team is right now. They expect to win. That’s where you feel very good about the character of our guys.”

Shanahan said he wasn’t concerned with whether Sunday’s game would be flexed into prime time and joked that he didn’t expect the league to call and ask his opinion. He’s got bigger things on his mind.

“Everything we’ve been working for boils down to next Sunday.”

It’s officially Dallas week.

The Cowboys are trailing the New Orleans Saints 31-17 with about 6 minutes left. (The Minnesota Vikings crushed the Houston Texans 23-6.)

 

Redskins hang on to beat Eagles, 27-20

A penalty on the last play of the game for grounding assessed to Eagles rookie QB Nick Foles causes a 10-second runoff with one second left, and the Redskins survive, 27-20, and will play for the NFC East title next week against the Dallas Cowboys at FedEx Field.

Redskins protecting against long pass

The Redskins are giving Nick Foles the middle of the field this entire drive, preferring instead to protecting against the deep pass for a touchdown that would tie the game. Washington is rushing only three linemen as well.

Brian Billick’s man-crush on Alfred Morris


Redskins running back Alfred Morris, right, apparently is a favorite of Fox analyst Brian Billick. (Associated Press).

Here’s Brian Billick on the Redskins’ rookie running back: “I’m in love with Alfred Morris.” He was talking specifically about how he carries the ball close to his body as opposed to Eagles RB Bryce Brown, who holds the ball away from his side.

Dion Lewis run draws Eagles to 27-20


Andy Reid may be coaching his final game in Philadelphia. (Associated Press)

Seldom-used running back Dion Lewis scores on a 17-yard run, and the Eagles cut the lead to 27-20 after intercepting Robert Griffin III in the fourth quarter.

Redskins give up ball on interception

Josh Morgan is unable to control Robert Griffin III’s high throw, and the Eagles catch the tip for their first interception in nine games. The Eagles were called for an illegal block, and the Redskins were called for unnecessary roughness, giving Philadelphia possession at the spot of the Eagles’ foul.

Third-quarter takeaway: Redskins in control

The Redskins are firmly in control of this game after getting a pair of third-quarter touchdowns. They should be able to keep the Eagles from threatening seriously from here. The pass rush has been good and now the Redskins can go after Nick Foles on every play. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Foles can’t get out of the way of his own offensive lineman on a crucial fourth-down play.

Redskins take 27-13 lead


Robert Griffin III’s second touchdown pass gives Redskins 27-13 lead. (Reuters)

Robert Griffin III makes one of his most impressive throws of the season on a 22-yard touchdown completion to Santana Moss for a 27-13 lead.

Santana Moss alertly picks up ball


Robert Griffin III has Redskins leading in the third quarter, 20-13. (Associated Press)

Robert Griffin III threw a pass that went backward and hit the ground, which could have led to disaster for the Redskins. But Santana Moss picked it up, and even though he was tackled in side the 5, Washington retained possession. The Redskins are challenging the call that the pass went backward.

Eagles cut lead to 20-13

Alex Henery makes his second field goal, this from 30 yards, to get the Eagles within 20-13 with 8:06 to play in the third quarter.

DeAngelo Hall lets Jeremy Maclin get up

After Jeremy Maclin caught a pass on the sideline, Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall instead of touching him down allowed the wide receiver to get up.

Alfred Morris scores touchdown


Alfred Morris helps Redskins build 20-10 lead. (Associated Press)

The Redskins moved down the field virtually at will, capping the first drive of the second half with a 10-yard scoring run from Alfred Morris to tie Charley Taylor’s Redskins’ rookie record for touchdowns and give Washington a 20-10 lead.

Nick Foles has an injured hand

Eagles quarterback Nick Foles has hurt his throwing hand, but will continue to play. He had X-rays at halftime and the team says he has a contusion.

In case you’d forgotten or were wondering, Michael Vick is inactive today.

Cowboys trail at halftime

New Orleans took a 17-14 lead into the locker room at halftime, scoring on a 6-yard pass from Drew Brees to Lance Moore, followed just before halftime by a 37-yard field goal by Garrett Hartley.

Second quarter takeaway… Eagles help Redskins to lead, but don’t give up

The Redskins are benefiting from the mistakes of Eagles rookie quarterback Nick Foles. His fumble and interception helped the Redskins to the lead. But the Eagles didn’t quit after falling behind 13-7, even with so little for which to play. They got a field goal late in the half and trail by only three points at the break.

 

Eagles get 38-yard field goal

Alex Henery’s 38-yard field goal cuts the Redskins’ lead to 13-10 with 18 seconds left until halftime. Henery’s kick was moving left, but the ball stayed inside the left upright.

Thanks, Fox!

Juuuuusssst in time for viewers’ halftime snacks, Fox cuts to a sideline shot of London Fletcher losing his. Or perhaps he just got hold of some expired Gatorade.

Josh Wilson back in the game

The Redskins secondary breathed a sign of relief when cornerback Josh Wilson re-entered despite hurting his shoulder.

Josh Wilson hurt

The Redskins have lost another cornerback, at least for now, with Josh Wilson on the sideline with shoulder strain. His return is questionable.

Hochuli on the TD review

Ed Hochuli, in another of his interesting explanations, says of Joshua Morgan’s touchdown, “It’s not possible to tell where the football was in relationship to the ‘plane’ when the knee was down.”

So, technology has failed him.

Redskins gallery

Some Redskins pictures for you. Take a look.

Redskins move ahead, 13-7

Robert Griffin III completes an 11-yard pass to wide receiver Josh Morgan to give the Redskins their first lead, 13-7. Morgan dove across the goal line before being tackled and after avoiding several tacklers.

Cowboys lead Saints

The Dallas Cowboys have taken a 14-7 lead on the New Orleans Saints with Tony Romo’s second touchdown pass to Dez Bryant, for 58 yards.

Romo has completed 8 of 9 passes for 169 yards; Bryant has five receptions for 145.

London Fletcher gets 23rd career interception

Linebacker London Fletcher gets his fifth interception and 23rd career after Barry Cofield tipped the ball at the line of scrimmage. It’s the second turnover of the first half for Nick Foles.

Kai Forbath sets kicking record


Redskins rookie Kai Forbath has made NFL-record 17 straight field goals to start career. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

The Redskins get a 42-yard field goal from Kai Forbath to cut the Eagles’ lead to 7-6 with 7:42 left in the first half. Forbath made his 17th in a row to start his career, setting an NFL record.

Kai Forbath boots another field goal

Rookie place kicker Kai Forbath’s 45-yard field goals draw the Redskins within 7-3 early in the second quarter. Forbath has made 16 straight to start his career, one short of the all-time record held by Garrett Hartley.

First quarter takeaway… Eagles have come to play

The Eagles have come to play and the Redskins had better respond. The Eagles’ two fourth-down gambles on their opening drive showed that Coach Andy Reid is willing to take chances in what is likely his final home game. But the Redskins got a break on that fumble by Nick Foles at the end of the quarter. That’s a rookie quarterback simply giving away three points by not throwing the ball away—a dreadful play.

Riley gets sack, then Kerrigan strips ball


Eagles rookie quarterback Nick Foles has a touchdown pass and lost fumble in the first quarter. (Associated Press)

Linebacker Perry Riley provides the first big play for the Redskins on defense, getting into the backfield for a sack of rookie quarterback Nick Foles. Then on the next play, Ryan Kerrigan strips the ball from Foles, and Richard Crawford recovers.

Redskins can’t convert on fourth down

The Redskins elected to go on fourth down and two, with Robert Griffin III faking a toss and running to his right looking for Santana Moss. The Eagles had two defenders rushing Griffin, and his throw fell incomplete.

Two views of Eagles’ TD

Two sides of the Eagles’ touchdown:

 

Eagles strike first for 7-0 lead

Nick Foles completes a 27-yard touchdown throw to Jeremy Maclin for a 7-0 lead five minutes into the first quarter. Cornerback D.J. Johnson looked like he thought he was going to get help, but Reed Doughty arrived way late.

Brian Billick insight


Robert Griffin III is back at starting quarterback today. (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

This gem from Fox color analyst Brian Billick: “Nick Foles is not a great athlete.” Next up: “Robert Griffin III is a great athlete.”

RGIII and that knee brace…


Warming up at the Linc. (Patrick McDermott / Getty Images)

Doctors cleared Robert Griffin III on Saturday evening to play today, two weeks after he sprained/strained (Mike Shanahan wasn’t specific) his lateral collateral ligament two weeks ago. As expected, he is wearing a “good-sized” knee brace, something he said was no big deal because he wore one in 2010, the year after he had anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction.

(FYI, Burgundy Blog is a doctor…like a real physician.)

Fantasy focus: Redskins at Eagles

Robert Griffin III owners exhaled when it became clear the rookie would start this week, which is the time for many fantasy Super Bowls. Griffin has a favorable matchup, and even though he’s coming off an injury, he was able to practice fully, so insert him in your starting lineups with confidence. Same goes with Pierre Garcon and Alfred Morris for the Redskins. As for the Eagles, LeSean McCoy is a risky play after missing four games following a concussion on Nov. 18 in a 31-6 loss to the Redskins. Look for Bryce Brown to continue to get carries as well so long as he doesn’t fumble. Jeremy Maclin is the only other Eagles player worth considering in fantasy, and he’s a WR2 or flex start with upside given Washington’s issues in the secondary.

Redskins control own path to playoffs

The Washington Redskins will be NFC East champions if they win their final two games. It’s that simple, and the path to the postseason begins with a game this afternoon that Washington should win. The Redskins are 6 1/2 point favorites, a considerable margin for a division game on the road, and about all the Eagle have to play for is Coach Andy Reid, who’s rumored to be on his way out after this dreadful season.

Week 16: Redskins at Eagles

Join the discussion in The Post’s Redskins live blog as we continue to break down this afternoon’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Redskins lead, 13-10, thanks to an 11-yard touchdown pass from Robert Griffin III to Josh Morgan. Boxscore

Reading material: Redskins saved their season in two weeks | Five story lines to follow | Griffin receives final clearance | Not overlooking hapless Birds | Defense stays aggressive |

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